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Microsoft Australia Continues to Invest in the ISV Community

  • 16 March, 2004 14:08

<p>Introducing the Channel Builder &amp; Business Builder Programs</p>
<p>Sydney, Australia – March 16, 2004 –Today at a Microsoft for Partners Briefing event, Microsoft Australia announced it invested AUD$4 million in the independent software vendor (ISV) community during the 2003 calendar year. Additionally, Microsoft Australia announced two new programs that aim to help ISVs realise greater returns on their business development. Dubbed "Channel Builder” and “Business Builder”, these two programs will provide more than 20 structured networking events around Australia, a global online networking tool and provide ISVs with the resources to utilise in their business.</p>
<p>"Succeeding as an ISV is a challenge today," said Kerstin Baxter, partner group director at Microsoft Australia. "Software development is a substantial investment, not to mention today's competitive market where customers require more specialised solutions to meet their business needs. Our goal is to enable our partners with everything we can to help them overcome these challenges and build a successful business. That is why we have invested considerably in this community with technical support, training, software rebates and marketing development funds."</p>
<p>Building the Channel</p>
<p>The Channel Builder program is designed to help Microsoft Certified Partners achieve commercial success with solutions they have built on the Microsoft platform. These companies have invested heavily in the development of their solutions but have limited expertise in building sales-engagement relationships. The program will bring ISVs together with Microsoft channel partners in other fields to drive networking opportunities that can lead to new partnerships, new solutions and new revenue streams.</p>
<p>As part of the Channel Builder program, Microsoft is slated to launch a global Web-based networking tool to connect partners in July 2004. The tool will identify and group companies by industry and specialisation and will offer chat rooms, bulletin boards, event registration and e-commerce functionality. The tool will also feature a partner portal with comprehensive information from Microsoft such as lists of contacts by region and subsidiary, product information and marketing collateral, and technical resources such as system requirements, upgrades and demos.</p>
<p>Building the Business within the Channel.</p>
<p>The Business Builder program aims to provide business acumen skills to inclined partners. The program will offer a variety of online business modules, tools and 30 templates with the aim to help develop the wave of business managers in the ISV community and further enhance the skills of existing managers.</p>
<p>“The goal of Business Builder is to help our partners translate their technical solutions into benefits the business manager can understand. We’ve found that partners are looking to Microsoft for assistance with translating the power of technology into language the board members can understand,” said Baxter.</p>
<p>The recently announced Software Business Management Course, developed with the Southern Cross University to provide a national distance-education business management course ISVs, is the first deliverable as part of the Business Builder program for ISVs. Starting this month, the Software Business Management Course is designed to help Australian ISVs articulate their business value, manage operating costs and learn proven management practices.</p>
<p>Specifically tailored for the operators of software companies that sell their products in the Asia Pacific region, the course provides practical advice on the latest business practices and management techniques, such as an introduction to the value chain and value system concepts. In addition to Australia, the course has already started in Singapore, China, India and New Zealand through new Microsoft associations with local business schools such as the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore in India and the Management Development Institute of Singapore.</p>
<p>To Enrol in the Channel Builder &amp; Business Builder Program</p>
<p>Companies that want to enrol in the Channel Builder &amp; Business Builder program must be either Microsoft Certified or Gold Certified Partners. More information on ISV programs and resources can be found at</p>
<p>To Enrol in the Software Business Management Course</p>
<p>For all contact and course information on the Software Business Management Course, please visit</p>
<p>About Microsoft
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software —
any time, any place and on any device.</p>
<p>About Southern Cross University
Southern Cross University is an innovative tertiary institution with more than 12,000 students from 50 countries. It is located in Northern NSW with three campuses in Lismore, Tweed Heads and Coffs Harbour. The university prides itself on its academic programs, innovative courses and internationally recognised research.</p>
<p>Microsoft is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.</p>
<p>The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.</p>
<p>For further information:</p>
<p>Stephen Rodi/Anne Flanagan
Howorth Communications</p>
<p>02 9904 2618</p>

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